Romantic Fairytale

Shanelle and Hayden

Saturday, 21 March 2020

The Romance

We met when we were fifteen and started working at a place called the Reject Shop where we accidentally logged into one another's POS as we had the same passcode (our birth year - original, I know). After multiple REJECTions by me, a few years later, I finally asked him out! Expecting him to say no just to get back at me, without hesitation he said yes (phew!) I have enjoyed being able to grow with Hayden by beginning our relationship as acquaintances, to being close friends and then finally realising he was my forever. For me, having a bond that started as a friendship made it so much easier to fall in love and ultimately build a solid foundation for a romantic relationship. We have known each other for over a decade and shared so much together. I would never want to share this incredible thing we call life with anyone else., I truly believe Hayden was sent to me by my father who has passed and was always the one for me, I was just too stubborn to admit it. He is a caring, genuine and loving human being.

Shanelle and Hayden Pescud   Shanelle and Hayden Pescud

The Proposal

Hayden proposed after five and a half years whilst on a trip to Melbourne, which is one of my favourite places. The morning we arrived Hayden had "planned" a place to go for breakfast and needed his trusty Google Maps to get him there.

After walking a kilometre more than necessary in the wrong direction, I became slightly irritated. We started walking past a cute book shop called The Paperback Books. Hayden asked me if there was anything that I wanted a closer look at in the store. At first place I replied with, "nah", and then in my peripheral vision a book caught my eye and then I said, "wait!"

Before I got the chance to show him what book I was looking at, he twirls me around to him on one knee asking me to marry him. In complete shock it took a few moments for the whole proposal to sink in and then before I knew it, the tears started to tremble down my face out of pure happiness. I was in utter disbelief, squealing “YES!” I pulled him up off his knee to squeeze him so tight, ignoring the beautiful custom-made ring that was still placed in the box.

As he is sliding the ring on my finger, he mentions that there’s a photographer capturing all these candid moments. The photographer hid in a telephone box for 45 minutes waiting for us to arrive, ensuring she stayed inconspicuous! There was an applause and cheer from the people in the streets and then we went for a quick little photo shoot around some parts of Melbourne. It was a truly magical day.

The Planning

When we first started thinking about our wedding, I was lost. I had never actually wanted to get married and had never envisioned my "perfect day" as a little girl. It's probably the thing I struggled with the most throughout the duration of the wedding planning stages. I don't think people realised how hard it was for me to know what I wanted and how/when I wanted things done because all that mattered to me was being with Hayden and I already had him, so why did I need to get married, right? Haha. In saying that I did draw a lot of inspiration from Pinterest, so this is a good place to start when planning a wedding.

Hayden started the wedding planning phases for me by suggesting having our wedding at my grandparent's place as all my favourite childhood memories were made on their beautiful property. He really does know me better than I know myself! When I realised, I didn't want my grandparents stressing over the clean up of the reception, Hayden and I started looking at reception venues.

We stumbled across the most incredible venue, Calvin Estate that was a small drive from my grandparent's property. We picked a date by flipping the numbers of the day of our anniversary so that we could keep it close to our anniversary date. From that, everything else just seemed to fall into place and I had all my vendors booked months in advance. Once you start, you don't stop until you have all the essentials., The week of our wedding was touch and go with the Pandemic taking full throttle. Every day there was a new change and limitations/restrictions, and I just didn't think the day was going to be allowed to go ahead. Before I knew it, it was full steam ahead with all my vendors pulling every string to ensure the day was perfect.

Shanelle and Hayden Pescud   Shanelle and Hayden Pescud

The Wedding Day

The day was meant to rain, and it turned out to be a beautiful sunny day with lots of flies and a fair bit of wind (which I didn't realise until looking back at our wedding video). My bridesmaids and I stayed at Calvin House to get ready, and the boys stayed at our place. I was doing a lot of last minute tweaks and we ended up spending a lot of time with the boys, eating pizza the night before the wedding.

The morning of the wedding began with the arrival of Olivia Richards Makeup Artistry and Luxe Hair by Britt Smith ready to turn us into real life princesses. My bridesmaids helped me get into my dress by White April so I could do a special 'first look' for my pop and my mum which was very emotional. Hayden and I had written love letters to each other for the morning of the wedding to help calm our nerves. I treated my letter as my vows, only for him to read. It was all about us and our feelings for one another without having to reiterate that to everyone else.

Shanelle and Hayden Pescud   Shanelle and Hayden Pescud

The Ceremony

I don't remember much from the wedding morning it was honestly a blur and I displayed no emotion. This was probably because I didn't think I would be able to have a wedding with COVID lingering. However, all that went away when I saw Hayden waiting for me at the end of the aisle. All the emotion came out at once and I started crying which was thankfully hidden by my veil. I grabbed his hands so tight, and I held them the whole ceremony, sweaty palms and all.

Unfortunately, due to the recent development of COVID a lot of people couldn't make it, but we still managed to share the day with our nearest and dearest which made it all the more special in such difficult times, dancing the night away., Our ceremony was held on my grandparent's property under a big, beautiful gum tree. My pop had built an arbour and also made a stunning chandelier to hang from it as a backdrop for us. Then WOW flowers added their magic touch to give it some colour. It was the most exquisite backdrop.

I lost my father at a young age and my pop has always been my rock in life, so it was important to have him walk me down the aisle. He taught me how to walk, ride a bike and drive a car so it was an obvious choice to have him 'give me away'. The girls, my pop and I arrived in style in a limousine and one-by-one we started walking down the hill towards the groom and groomsmen.

Rachel, our wedding coordinator from Calvin Estate worked with us to ensure we could have an off-site ceremony by bringing all the chairs and pews and even making sure my dress sat perfectly in all the photos. She made the whole 'getting married' thing a breeze. I remember telling Rachel to do whatever she likes when it came to creating the look of the day. The common phrase was "surprise me", "make it look like a fairy tale" - not a lot to work with but she did a fantastic job and created a romantic, whimsical wedding.

Our celebrant Jeff had made Hayden be turned around until I was walking down the aisle, so it almost got to be like a 'first look'. He shared our love story and our aspirations with our friends and family and added some quirks that were fitting to us.

As we signed our marriage certificate, we had Marriage Life by Michael Giacchino play as our music. We decided on this as 'Up' is our favourite Disney movie and Carl and Ellie hold a special place in our hearts. There is a change in the song that gets us every single time and we both looked at each other on the day as we always do with sad faces as we remembered the scene at which the music transitions.

For our first kiss I did the classic foot-pop from Princess Diaries and then Saturday Sun by Vance Joy played as we walked back down the aisle as Mr & Mrs Pescud - confetti in our face and all.

Shanelle and Hayden Pescud   Shanelle and Hayden Pescud

The Reception

As we had our portraits and bridal party shots, the guests ventured to Calvin Estate for canapés and got settled into the new venue. The limo then took us to the venue where we entered as the new Mr & Mrs Pescud to Right Here, Right Now by Fatboy Slim. There was no plan on how the reception was going to pan out, but it felt like a breeze with our celebrant Jeff as our MC and DJ, everything seemed seamless. Hayden and I immediately walked over to our 'In loving memory' tribute and lit a candle for all those who couldn't be with us in person but in spirit.

Hayden and I ducked out for some intimate sunset shots with our photographer (Wild Flower Photography) and our videographer (Moose & Co Weddings). We completed all the speeches as the food was being served. Our guests raved about the food by Monkey Place Catering which we were so grateful they could still service our wedding even under the COVID measures.

The first dance, reception dress change, cake cutting with cake by the amazing MelRose Cakes, wedding games and the pop & daughter dance all followed in no particular order, making it such a memorable night spent with all our loved ones. Wrapped up with a failed attempt at the 'Sparkler Send Off' then made up for with an epic conga line and wedding tunnel exit.

The Honeymoon

Like most Pandemic brides, a honeymoon was out of reach. We had organised to go to Hawaii but alas it did not eventuate. We ended up having a mini moon where we stayed at Calvin House (our reception accommodation) and soaked up one another's company. It was so lovely to wake up surrounded by peace and serenity as the birds chirped in the distance, just us two.

Little did I know Hayden was attempting to organise a balloon ride as we were unable to have the Honeymoon we had planned. However, this was the week that NSW went into lockdown! So, we were pretty lucky to have a) been married and b) had a mini moon. Blessed is an understatement.

Wedding Advice

There's no way of stopping time, but they're right when they say the day goes by in a flash. So, my advice is to try and share each other's company in those small, intimate moments, whether that be during your portraits or first dance.

No matter how perfectly you think you have planned the day, things are out of your control and may not go as anticipated but don't sweat the small stuff. Just have fun! Everyone is already there for you. They're not going to care about the lavender coloured napkins that were supposed to be periwinkle...

Lastly, attempt to thank all your loved ones for being there to celebrate this momentous occasion with you and most importantly try not to get married during a Pandemic!,


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